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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My 8 month old puppy (whom we've had just under 2 months) needs daily ear cleaning and ear medication. She is completely and totally traumatized every time we try to clean it. The only way to make it work is if one of us holds her body and head still while the other puts the medicine in her ear. It's been getting increasingly worse and tonight (the 3rd night we've done it) she peed a little twice and afterwards ran behind the chair and hid from us. I feel terrible! I don't want my puppy to be scared of us and I don't want to be upsetting her like this, but she needs this done. I don't have enough time to ease her into it, she needs the medicine now.
Any suggestions?
 

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Maybe give her really high value treats before and after- something she LOVES, maybe even a little bit of your dinner? That's what my family does with our dog that has chronic ear infections- she gets a yummy treat/some people food after she gets dosed.

You could also try making a game out of pretending to give her the medication- act like you're going to do it, hold her for a second, and then give her a treat. This may not make it any less unpleasant to get her meds (my guess is they probably hurt a lot), but it would keep her from thinking people touching her ears means pain and reacting inappropriately to being touched there (I know a family whose lab would snap if you touched his ears following an ear infection; it made petting him kind of nerve wracking).
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
What I've noticed about her is that when she's protesting something out of fear, she won't accept even the highest of treat levels. I could offer her raw chicken and she'll still turn it down.
I also would rather not make it a game since that sounds like it will draw out the fear even longer for her.
 
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